Liberal Democrat led Faversham Town Council, have been working hard on improving biodiversity in Faversham and proactively working with other organisations and the community to find new projects to benefit both wildlife and people's lives. The Climate and Biodiversity Working Group, chaired by Cllr Chris Williams, allocated funding to replace two bus shelters in the town centre with new ones to include a living roof. These shelters have been widely used in mainland Europe and are a beneficial way of increasing opportunities for biodiversity, help tackle poor air quality, and improving the amenity value of our community.
The first of living roof bus shelters order by the Town Council's Climate and Biodiversity working group has now been installed on The Mall, with a second to be installed on Stone Street in February.
The two locations, The Mall and Stone Street, are both on busy roads, where bus use is higher. There are plans to look at turning other bus shelters in the town into ones with living roofs in the future.
The plants are drought tolerant species that have nectar-rich flowers for pollinators. They are low maintenance requiring very little watering and weeding, throughout the year, making it really cost-effective.
Cllr Chris Williams says “Green or living roofs on top of structures such as bus shelters, allow us to find ways to help nature and aid biodiversity to flourish in areas that would be difficult to otherwise do. It is increasingly clear that urban areas have a very important part of conservation of species, and Faversham has shown that we can not only can this be achieved but also, we can lead the way. Faversham Liberal Democrats have proven that we as a party have put the Climate and Biodiversity emergency as a priority for helping to improve local people’s lives."
Research shows that living roof bus shelters have multiple benefits, providing food and habitat to assist with biodiversity, helping to improve air quality, reducing surface water runoff from the shelters, and adding a splash of colour to the street scene.
Liberal Democrat County Councillor Antony Hook supported the shelters with a contribution from his KCC members grant.